The Best of 2012

The top ten ShameThe MasterHoly MotorsGoodbye First LoveMartha Marcy May MarleneExcisionThe Tree Of LifeKiller JoeStarletYoung Adult Film Of The YearShame The first film I saw at the cinema in 2012, and, as the year closes, still the one that left the greatest impression. Michael Fassbender’s controlled performance as Brandon sears the screen, ably complimented by … Continue reading The Best of 2012

Review: Looper

Women in science fiction films tend to get short shrift. There are exceptions, obviously. The Alien series for instance is generous to its female inhabitants. But by and large it’s a genre that tends to be something of a boy’s playground, with any genuine layering or complexity reserved for your main man (unless he’s Keanu … Continue reading Review: Looper

Review: Killing Them Softly

To these eyes and ears, Andrew Dominik’s 2007 western The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford was one of the finest films of the last ten years. A stately, elegant piece of work, it quietly commanded respect and elevated Dominik into that higher tier of filmmakers who’s every subsequent work becomes noteworthy … Continue reading Review: Killing Them Softly

Review: Berberian Sound Studio

If you’re a horror enthusiast or audiophile of any serious pedigree, then Berberian Sound Studio would appear, on paper, to be right up your alley. Did you used to sit at home listening to BBC sound effects records? Can you list every significant giallo production in chronological order? Would you debate what counts as significant? If the answer to … Continue reading Review: Berberian Sound Studio

Review: Holy Motors

A cinema crowd sits comatose; lulled into sleep by whatever it is they’re being shown. Another humdrum movie. Whatever. The light plays on their closed eyes and moribund faces. In an upstairs room, Holy Motors’ director Leos Carax awakes, and, using a key that is part of his hand, opens a door in the wall. … Continue reading Review: Holy Motors

Review: Lawless

Lawless is a bloody and violent film, one which whole-heartedly earns its 18 certificate. Set in rural Virginia circa 1931, it proposes to tell the true story of the Bondurant boys, siblings dedicated to the production and transportation of moonshine, attempting to grow rich off of prohibition’s halcyon days, yet still living in abject squalor. … Continue reading Review: Lawless

Review: Samsara

Samsara is the latest project from Ron Fricke, documentary photographer extraordinaire who, 20 years ago, wowed certain circles with Baraka, a visual feast of globe-trotting beauty. Samsara looks to repeat that film’s success and audacity, as we take a world tour of life, death and everything in between, and not a word uttered. The difficulties … Continue reading Review: Samsara

Review: Shadow Dancer

Shadow Dancer, directed by James Marsh from Tom Bradby’s screenplay of his own novel, concerns an MI5 mole in Belfast in 1993. Peace was a subject tentatively being broached. An anticipatory time, if I recall. I myself was ten at the time. Growing up in the late eighties and nineties, talk of ‘the troubles’ was … Continue reading Review: Shadow Dancer

Review: Total Recall (2012)

“I’ll see you at the party, Richter” God bless Schwarzenegger. To certain people of a certain age with a certain sensibility, the above is one of the great movie quotes of all time. Paul Verhoeven’s Total Recall, by no means a perfect film, was nonetheless a rip-roaring thrill ride of excess. Coming at the tail … Continue reading Review: Total Recall (2012)

Review: The Imposter

I arrived at The Imposter atop a crest of anticipation brought about by the seeming consensus amongst film critics that this was the documentary event of the year, guaranteed to astound and enthral. The trailer does a great job of sucking you into the premise, and for UK audiences it has even been gilded with … Continue reading Review: The Imposter

Review: Take This Waltz

One, two, three. One, two, three. One, two, three. One, two, three. The triple step of the waltz is a good simile for Sarah Polley’s latest feature film, which deals with the complications inherent when there’re two men and one woman. The one woman is Michelle Williams, playing Margot, and this is completely her film. … Continue reading Review: Take This Waltz

Review: Searching For Sugar Man

It’s that time of year again. The multiplexes are filled to bursting with awful, horrible children. Children that are chewing, yelling, texting, copulating and generally making the lives of grown up cinema goers an absolute fucking trauma. Who births these intolerable demons? Who allows them to behave like this? Because of them the chain cinemas … Continue reading Review: Searching For Sugar Man

Review: Electrick Children

Okay, first of all, is anyone enamoured by purposefully misspelled words anymore? Seriously. Just because a ‘k’ has a sharper sound (and shape) than a ‘c’ does not make it cool to play add-or-replace. And even if Electrick Children as a title is supposed to be a pun around the word ‘trick’… it doesn’t work. … Continue reading Review: Electrick Children

Review: The Dark Knight Rises

So, The Dark Knight Rises, then. A film that has been ‘coming soon’ since August of last year. Teaser trailers… more posters than you can shake a stick at… It all boils down to this. This film. This event. Christopher Nolan’s crowning of the most legitimate of comic-book franchises. 2008’s The Dark Knight was a … Continue reading Review: The Dark Knight Rises